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In Illustrator CS5 Essential Training, author Mordy Golding explains the core concepts and techniques that apply to any workflow in Illustrator, whether designing for print, the web, or assets for other applications. This course includes a detailed explanation of the elements that make up vector graphics—paths, strokes, and fills—and shows how to use each of the Illustrator drawing tools. Also demonstrated are techniques for combining and cleaning up paths, organizing paths into groups and layers, text editing, working with color, effects, and much more. Exercise files accompany the course.
In addition to all of the Selection tools that you see here inside of the Tools panel, Illustrator also has a Select menu and there are some options that are here that really let you focus on getting certain types of selections very quickly. The two I want to focus on in this movie though are the ones down hear called Select > Same and Select > Object. On a basic level the Select > Same functions allow you to select one type of object and then tell Illustrator I want to now go ahead and select all the other objects in my document that are the exact same as the one that I have currently selected right now.
So in other words, it allows you to select one object and then select others that are exactly the same. The Select > Object command allows you to select similar types of objects inside of your document. In this example, you don't have to select anything first. You just tell Illustrator, "well, select all of my text objects for example." Let's take a look at how some of these settings work. I'm going to use my Direct Selection tool and I'm going to click just on this portion of the flower. It currently has a stroke and a fill, what appears to be a gradient fill, and if I want to select all other objects in my document that had that exact same fill and stroke color, I can go to the Select menu and I can choose Select > Same > Fill and Stroke.
If all I was interested in, by the way, was just the stroke color itself, I could say select other objects that share that exact same stroke color. The shapes and everything else can be different as long as it has that same attribute. These commands here are kind of nice, but there's a way to access these commands much more quickly directly inside of your artboard. Let's see how that works. Notice that at the top of my screen I have my context-sensitive Control panel. One of the elements that you'll find in the Control panel is this icon right here. It's the Select Similar Objects which is exactly the same as the Select > Same menu.
Here's how you use it. First you'd click on little arrow here to choose what type of attributes it is that you want to select by. You can choose All, which is the default setting, or you can use Fill and Stroke Color, kind of what we've been using here. So I'll choose Fill and Stroke Color. Notice now that everything in my document that had that same fill and stroke has now become selected, but here is why this feature is so nice inside of Illustrator. If I deselect everything right now and I click on one of these flowers and I decide now that I want to select all the flowers, I just have to click once on this button.
It memorizes the last setting that I've used for that, which was the Select > Same > Fill and Stroke Color setting, and instantly applied it now so that all the elements are now selected. For example, if I now choose to select one of these leaves, a single click on this icon would now select all the leaves in my document. I'll click on a blank area of my artboard to deselect everything. And let's take a quick look in the Select menu at some of the settings for these Select > Object commands. If you're working with Web graphics, Illustrator has the ability to snap art to a pixel grid. If you'd like to make sure that all of your art is snapped to this grid, you can choose Object > Not Aligned to Pixel Grid and any elements that are currently not snapped to that pixel grid will become selected so you can work with them manually.
Additionally, you may have a document with lots of clipping masks inside of them. We're going to talk a lot about clipping masks in another chapter, but if you want to quickly select all of the masks in your document, you can do so in one fell swoop just by choosing Select > Object and then choosing Clipping Masks. There is one thing to keep in mind about these two settings, the Selects > Same and the Select > Object commands, and that's of course if objects are locked in your document, those objects will not become selected even when you're using these functions. So if you find yourself working with files that someone else created and you want to use any of these Select functions, it might be a good idea to make sure that everything is unlocked before you use them.
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